Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

Receiver Ivan McCartney, who left the WVU football team midseason in 2012, is re-enrolling in school and plans to rejoin the team.

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — After flying from Miami to Pittsburgh on Saturday, Ivan McCartney Tweeted “Next stop Morgantown” where the receiver planned to meet with WVU football coaches and rejoin the program he left last November.

The former four-star recruit announced Friday night he was returning to WVU for his senior season, a curious turnaround considering McCartney’s junior season ended when he quit the team after the eighth game, citing what coach Dana Holgorsen referred to as “personal reasons.”

McCartney made 49 catches for 595 yards as a sophomore in 2011, in what seemed to signal breakout ability. But he caught only nine passes for 112 yards last season, unable to get much playing time behind WVU’s record-setting tandem of Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey, and by the development of senior J.D. Woods.

McCartney became the second wide receiver to leave the team during a four-day span last November, joining freshman Travares Copeland, who subsequently transferred to N.C. State.

West Virginia’s receiving competition looks to be wide open, with three junior college signees — Kevin White, Ronald Carswell and Mario Alford — expected to contribute, and incoming freshman Shelton Gibson representing the highest-rated player from February’s recruiting class. Where McCartney fits in after being away from school for a semester, and what he must do to regain the coaches’ confidence, should make for an interesting summer.

By Saturday afternoon, a Twitter follower asked McCartney if he would still wear the No. 5 jersey, to which the receiver replied “idk yet.”

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  • john

    I'm sure his High School Coach and Former Mountaineer Linebacker Damon Cogdell spoke to him. I think IMAC is smart enough to see to former HS and WVU Teamates (Geno and Stedman) are in the pros and that WVU is the program to give him the opportunity to make that step.

  • wvguy624

    Glad to see him come back. Loads of potential.

  • Guardian

    Welcome back, Sticks!

    Let he among you critics who is without sin cast the first stone.

  • big tom

    let's hope the personal problems are behind him, and he's ready to compete,,,, he has all the tools, it's the mind set that he must prepare.
    competion makes evereyone better or they leave,, he left...
    but , i'm ready to see the four stars come to life and light up mountaineer stadium

  • Protechcpa

    I have never seen him make one difficult catch. This will go nowhere.

  • Greg

    His cousin is Chad Ochocinco. What did you expect? Good advice? Welcome back young man and make your mark on WVU like Tavon and Stedman did. The only person keeping you from doing so is you.

  • Wemakerain

    Welcome home sticks, glad you're back

  • Helen5844

    May the best man win the job!!! LETS GOOOOO MOUNTAINEERS

  • Dave

    Catch the ball and run with it like you stole it! GO MOUNTAINEERS!

  • shepherd

    Hes a kid...Kids make mistakes, all he has to do is come in and catch 80 balls for 1200 yards and it will be like he never left. Lets go eers!!!!

    • Big Johnny

      I'm so tired of hearing the excuse "he's a kid" (not just in relation to him but kids all over). Every time kids make mistakes all the adults say is "they're kids" or "kids will be kids". Whenever I made mistakes growing up my parents didn't chalk it up to me being a kid...I was told that I knew better and I proceeded to get my butt whooped. That being said I hope he shows some contrition and wins the trust back of his teammates and catches 80 balls for 1200 yards with 15 TDS. Let's Go Mountaineers!!!

      • Chris

        Before you talk about IMAC get your facts straight, he had good reason to do what he done.

        • Big Johnny

          Uhm?...How was I talking about Ivan? All I said was that he made a mistake. He quit the team for personal reasons. My comment was directed at the blanket statement "he's a kid". I'm so tired of hearing that excuse. At some point these "kids" need to put their big boy pants on and accept the fall-out from the choices that they make...regardless of the reason the choices were made.

  • Chris

    I don't think he will get number 5 back i've heard afford wants that number.

  • Maxxajay

    I like it, we need some Experience

  • Martinsburg Resident

    I hope he has his personal problems resolved & matured as a football player...just give your all & good things will happen. McCartney has too much talent to waste! Let's Go Mountaineers!

  • richard

    he quit on his team. he quit on the fans. why would they or we want him back. 2nd chances need to be earned. if he proves himself-then he deserves another chance. maybe we don't know the whole story..........time to prove yourself Ivan or just keep on going down the road!

    • Sean

      Fans like you make me sick... You not knowing the whole story is correct. He had a close family member pass away. He wasn't contributing to the team and his head wasn't in the right place so he took some time off. Have some respect for the kid for re enrolling and continuing his education to do something with his life rather then complaining about him not being what he could have been on the football field... You are probably the same fans leaving early when we are losing but right there screaming about how you bleed gold and blue when we win a BCS game... Go troll for another team I'd rather have 1,000 loyal fans and encouraging our players rather then having douchebags like you filling our stands because we had a few good seasons

    • David

      I suggest unless you know exactly why then you might just want to hold judgement. Not sure if he is the one but if he is then it was truly a personal reason.

    • bigd

      A lot of fans jumped off bandwagon when things got rough but they will jump back on with a good season.

  • Mister

    Good luck.